Quantcast Grain Mites

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Like Psocids, Grain mites
Psocids are tiny, pale gray or yellowish-white,
can be eliminated by discarding
infested materials and cleaning
wingless, soft-bodied insects little more than 1/16 inch
long. They feed primarily on mold that grows on
and drying out the chamber.
decomposing starchy materials. Psocids are sometimes
Grain mites have been known to
called "book lice" because they are found in great
be responsible for allergies like
those caused by house dust
numbers on books and papers
mites in humid homes. Use
sized with starch and stored in
preparations containing tannic
damp  situations.  Psocids
require a minimal relative
acid (carpet cleaners or brewed
tea) applied to mite cast skins to
humidity of at least 60
suppress this protein allergy.
percent;  t h i s l e v e l
accomplishes two purposes:
the moisture keeps the Psocids
from drying out, and it
promotes the mold or fungal
growth on which they feed. A
Stored product pests include a wide range of
relatively high humidity can
insects that feed on grain, seeds and other plant parts
be maintained in poorly-ventilated rooms, closets,
that are stored, milled, or processed. Some of these
basements, cabinets and pantries with a moisture
pests infest stored products at every point from their
source. To eliminate Psocids, discard the starchy
origin in fields to granaries, mills, processing plants,
source of mold and dry out the storage area.
warehouses, retail stores, food serving establishments,
and homes. Some species of stored product pests can
The most common grain mite is called Acaras
feed on the whole intact grain. Most can only feed on
siro. These tiny tick relatives look like dust with a
grains that have been broken or milled, and some feed
slightly brownish tinge. A constant humidity level is
on processed herbs and spices. Each pest species has
even more important to Grain mites which prefer
a preferred environment and group of foods. Stored
relative humidities between 75 and 85 percent. Grain
product pest infestations are not easy to discover when
mites are almost colorless but have long microscopic
populations are low or building up. Pheromone traps
hairs. When they molt, the hairs of the cast skins cling
(traps that use specific attractants) are very helpful in
to those of others. [They can pile up in a fluffy ball
monitoring stored products in a pest management
the size of a man's palm. A population of that size can
program. Locating and discarding infested products in
be produced in a humid kitchen cabinet with as little as
homes and restaurants is a common method used in
a scant dusting of flour over the shelf.]
stored product pest control.
Module One, Chapter 4, Pg 6


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